Leonardo Da Vinci
Italian High Renaissance Painter and Inventor, 1452-1519
Florentine Renaissance man, genius, artist in all media, architect, military engineer. Possibly the most brilliantly creative man in European history, he advertised himself, first of all, as a military engineer. In a famous letter dated about 1481 to Ludovico Sforza, of which a copy survives in the Codice Atlantico in Milan, Leonardo asks for employment in that capacity. He had plans for bridges, very light and strong, and plans for destroying those of the enemy. He knew how to cut off water to besieged fortifications, and how to construct bridges, mantlets, scaling ladders, and other instruments. He designed cannon, very convenient and easy of transport, designed to fire small stones, almost in the manner of hail??grape- or case-shot (see ammunition, artillery). He offered cannon of very beautiful and useful shapes, quite different from those in common use and, where it is not possible to employ cannon ?? catapults, mangonels and trabocchi and other engines of wonderful efficacy not in general use. And he said he made armoured cars, safe and unassailable, which will enter the serried ranks of the enemy with their artillery ?? and behind them the infantry will be able to follow quite unharmed, and without any opposition. He also offered to design ships which can resist the fire of all the heaviest cannon, and powder and smoke.
The large number of surviving drawings and notes on military art show that Leonardo claims were not without foundation, although most date from after the Sforza letter. Most of the drawings, including giant crossbows (see bows), appear to be improvements on existing machines rather than new inventions. One exception is the drawing of a tank dating from 1485-8 now in the British Museum??a flattened cone, propelled from inside by crankshafts, firing guns. Another design in the British Museum, for a machine with scythes revolving in the horizontal plane, dismembering bodies as it goes, is gruesomely fanciful.
Most of the other drawings are in the Codice Atlantico in Milan but some are in the Royal Libraries at Windsor and Turin, in Venice, or the Louvre and the École des Beaux Arts in Paris. Two ingenious machines for continuously firing arrows, machine-gun style, powered by a treadmill are shown in the Codice Atlantico. A number of other sketches of bridges, water pumps, and canals could be for military or civil purposes: dual use technology.
Leonardo lived at a time when the first artillery fortifications were appearing and the Codice Atlantico contains sketches of ingenious fortifications combining bastions, round towers, and truncated cones. Models constructed from the drawings and photographed in Calvi works reveal forts which would have looked strikingly modern in the 19th century, and might even feature in science fiction films today. On 18 August 1502 Cesare Borgia appointed Leonardo as his Military Engineer General, although no known building by Leonardo exists.
Leonardo was also fascinated by flight. Thirteen pages with drawings for man-powered aeroplanes survive and there is one design for a helicoidal helicopter. Leonardo later realized the inadequacy of the power a man could generate and turned his attention to aerofoils. Had his enormous abilities been concentrated on one thing, he might have invented the modern glider. Related Paintings of Leonardo Da Vinci :. | La Gioconda (The Mona Lisa) | Christ's Head | The Annunciation | Virgin and Child with St Anne and St John the Baptist | Reverse side of the portrait of Ginevra de' Benci |
Related Artists:Giacomo Di Chirico
Giacomo Di Chirico (25 January 1844 - 26 December 1883) was an italian painter. Together with Domenico Morelli and Filippo Palizzi, he was one of the most elite Neapolitan artists of the 19th century. He received the official title eKnight of Italye from King Victor Emmanuel II.
Ivan Grohar (15 June 1867 - 19 April 1911) was a Slovene Impressionist painter. Together with Rihard Jakopič, Matej Sternen and Matija Jama, he is considered one of the leading figures of Slovene impressionism in the fin de siecle period.
Grohar was born in the Upper Carniolan village of Spodnja Sorica, then part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. From an early age, he showed an interest in art but he could not develop his talent because he was an orphan and lived in poverty. In 1888, the local vicar Anton Jamnik sent him to an exhibition in the nearby town of Škofja Loka, enabling him to spend the summer working in the town of Kranj under the supervision of the church painter Matija Bradaška. He also travelled to Zagreb, where he worked in the atelier of Spiridion Milanesi, until he was conscripted into the Austro-Hungarian Army. He disliked the military life, so he deserted and fled to Venice, in Italy. Left with nothing, he appealed to the Austro-Hungarian consulate. In 1889 a court sentenced him to a short stay in prison and extended his military service by one year.
Ivan Grohar: Brna from 1899In 1892, he applied to the Carniolan Provincial Diet for financial assistance to study at the Graz school of painting, which he received. Two years later, he applied for assistance to study at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. This assistance was also approved, but despite his excellent exam result, he was not accepted to the Academy because he had not finished his studies in Graz. He continued his schooling in Graz and finished it at the end of 1894. In August 1896, he opened his own atelier in Škofja Loka. He also worked in Munich, where he attended Anton Ažbe school of art. Back home, he befriended the impressionist painter Rihard Jakopič. In autumn of 1900, he took part in the first Slovene Artistse Exhibition, organised by the Slovene Artistic Association (Slovensko umetniško društvo, SUD). He was elected to the position of treasurer of the SUD, but illegally borrowed money from the association, for which he was sentenced to three monthse imprisonment. On his release, he left for Vienna.Jan van Scorel
Jan Van Scorel Galleries
Jan van Scorel (1495, Schoorl - December 6, 1562, Utrecht) was an influential Dutch painter credited with the introduction of High Italian Renaissance art to the Netherlands. It is not known whether he began his studies under Jan Gossaert in Utrecht or with Jacob Cornelisz in Amsterdam, but it certain that it was the master painters he would meet later in his life who would have the greatest effect on his technique. Van Scorel began traveling through Europe in his early twenties, first heading to Nuremberg and then to Austria. It was there, in 1520, that he completed his first representative work, the "Sippenaltar" in St. Martin's church in the village of Obervellach. Giorgione served as a considerable influence on van Scorel during a tenure in Venice. Upon leaving Venice, van Scorel passed through Rome and made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. His experiences in Jerusalem are depicted in many of his later works.
In 1521, van Scorel returned to Rome where he met Pope Adrian VI, who appointed him painter to the Vatican. He himself sat for a portrait. Van Scorel enjoyed the influence of Michelangelo and Raphael, and succeeded Raphael as Keeper of the Belvedere.
Upon his return to the Netherlands in 1524, he settled in Haarlem where he began a successful career as a painter and a teacher. Van Scorel was a very educated man and skilled as an engineer and an architect, as well as an artist. He was also multi-lingual, no doubt as a result of his travels.
Considered to be the leading Netherlandish Romanist, van Scorel moved to Ghent for painting contracts before moving to Utrecht for the same reason, where he died in 1562, leaving behind a wealth of portraits and altarpieces. Though many of his works fell victim to the Iconoclasm in 1566, some still remain and can be seen primarily at museums in the Netherlands.